Plastic Surgery Societies Applaud the FDA's Decision to Approve Silicone Breast Implants

The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery and The American Society of Plastic Surgeons, the two largest plastic surgery membership organizations, applaud the FDA's decision to approve Allergan Corp. and Mentor Corp.'s silicone breast implants and return these devices to the U.S. market. This decision comes 14 years after the FDA restricted access to the silicone implants because of safety concerns.

"Plastic surgeons are committed to patient safety and education," said James Stuzin, MD, ASAPS president. "It is clear that the agency has carefully evaluated the data presented by the manufacturers, as well as the testimony of physicians, patients and advocacy groups and has made a thoughtful decision to give our patients the access to silicone gel breast implants that women in 60 countries around the world have."

The specialty of plastic surgery supports a woman's right to make informed personal choices about her health care based on all the available and accurate information about cosmetic plastic surgery, breast augmentation and breast reconstruction. Cosmetic plastic surgery is serious surgery. It requires a complete medical consultation with a plastic surgeon certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery who will fully inform a potential patient about the risks and benefits of surgery.

Approximately 300,000 women chose breast augmentation in 2005, according to ASAPS and ASPS statistics. Nearly 58,000 women had breast reconstruction in 2005, according to ASPS. Both breast augmentation and reconstruction have been proven in numerous studies to have psychological and physical benefits for women who choose these procedures.

The ASPS and ASAPS will continue to offer their assistance to the manufacturers for the conditions set forth by the FDA related to physician and patient education. One comprehensive example of this assistance is a joint Web site,, which offers objective and science based information regarding saline and silicone breast implants.

The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS) is the leading organization of board-certified plastic surgeons specializing in cosmetic plastic surgery. ASAPS active-member plastic surgeons are certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery or the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada.

To locate an ASAPS board-certified plastic surgeon in your area click Find-a-Surgeon

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